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James Wade could be crowned as McCoy’s Premier League Champion for the second time, while Simon Whitlock is chasing his first PDC major title, when the competition’s Play-Offs take place at London’s O2 Arena on Thursday evening.

Photo: Lawerence Lustig/PDC

The MODUS pair could meet in the final of the prestigious tournament, but will have to overcome two tough competitors in the semis first.

Wade takes on Phil Taylor in a repeat of the historic 2010 final, when two nine-darters from ‘The Power’ were the deciding factor in the match.

The last-four clash sees the PDC’s two most successful players go head to head, with Wade gunning for an eighth televised title on the night.

“I’ve got to win two games now but it’s not as simple as that because I’m playing Phil in the semis,” said Wade, the world number three. “Hopefully I’ll win the first one and then we’ll see what happens.

“I think it’s quite clear that Phil does something special against me and prepares perhaps even a little bit differently.

“If I can beat him in the semi-finals then hopefully I’ll have a good game in the final – but I’ve got to try and beat Phil first. I’m being positive about it and not frightened by playing him.”

Preceding that game is a familiar semi-final pairing, as Whitlock faces the player who denied him a second Ladbrokes World Championship final appearance in January, Andy Hamilton.

‘The Wizard’ reached the semi-finals of the Premier League two years ago, and wants to go even further this time, after qualifying for the Play-Offs in second place.

Photo: Lawerence Lustig/PDC

He said: “I set myself goals and I’ve achieved the first one, but the job’s not done yet – I want to make the final and win it.

“I was a bit unlucky when I lost in the semis two years ago; James (Wade) pulled out one big finish which hurt me, and I still haven’t forgotten that. Hopefully I can make up for that now.”

Both semi-finals will be the best of 15 legs, with the triumphant players preparing for a best of 19 battle in the final.

Sandwiched in between is a best of eleven legs shoot-out between MODUS pair Michael van Gerwen and James Hubbard, who are competing for the title of PDC Unicorn World Youth Champion.

The match will be 23-year old van Gerwen’s swansong on the Youth Tour. He said:  “Last year I lost in the final and I was very disappointed. It’s my last chance to win this title and I want to take it with both hands.”

19-year-old Hubbard, who recently qualified in the top 32 for the UK Open, believes he has proved that he has what it takes to take to the title.

He said: “My run to the quarter-final in Birmingham has given me a massive confidence boost. I’m looking forward to playing Michael, knowing that I’ve beaten players of the same calibre.”

The evening will also see a special performance of the charity single ‘Got My Ticket For The Darts’, written by Chas Hodges and released this week to raise money for Haven House Children’s Hospice, priced at 99p and available from iTunes.

By Chris Murphy

 

Watch the video for the ‘Got My Ticket To The Darts’ charity single now at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yFBSwgOQJ3c

See Simon Whitlock and James Wade in action in Grimsby on Friday 1st June / Weston-Super-Mare on Saturday 2nd June

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